Final drive salvages Republic football win at home against hard-charging Willard

Republic watched a 24-point lead slip away in the fourth quarter, then marched 80 yards to snatch a victory back from Willard in a wild, 48-43 win in Republic, Friday. Quarterback Lucas Hayes scored the game-winning touchdown with 50 seconds remaining, just a little over a minute after Willard had gained its first lead of the night, 43-42.
“I’m always hard on Lucas (Hayes). That kid played awesome tonight,” said coach Dustin Baldwin. “Those last two drives – phenomenal football, man.”
The final scoring drive helped Republic avoid a heartbreaking loss. Repub- lic had built a 34-7 lead at halftime, but Willard fought all the way back to cut the lead to one, 42-41, late in the fourth quarter. Willard completed a two-point con- version after the touchdown to take the lead, setting up Republic’s game-winning drive.
Hayes engineered an 80-yard drive that lasted just 1:17. It included a 3rd-and-10 reception by Claye White that went for 33 yards. Another pass to Gavyn Walker went for 24 yards and set up Hayes’ touchdown run. Willard had one last opportunity, driving inside the Republic 20-yard line, but the final pass fell incomplete.
Lucas Hayes completed 7 of 15 passes for 204 yards, a
touchdown, and an interception. He rushed for 81 yards on 19 carries.
White caught three passes for 167 yards and two touchdowns. Riley Sigman
ran for 100 yards in just eight carries. Josh Sterling had six carries for 45 yards, and Gavyn Walker had two catches for 50 yards. And Micah Erickson, in his first
varsity start, recovered two fumbles    in    the    first    half. They both led to Republic touchdowns.
“I’m proud of our kids. We hung in there (through)
a lot of adversity. We made one more play than they did,” said Baldwin.
Both Republic and Willard are 2-3.Republic travels to Ozark Friday.


Lawrence County Record

312 S. Hickory St.
Mt. Vernon, MO, 65712


Please Login for Premium Content